Endophytic fungi from Chilean native gymnosperms: antimicrobial activity against human and phytopathogenic fungi.
Thirty-eight endophytic fungi were isolated from eight Chilean gymnosperms. Isolates were characterized and grouped according to culture characteristics, colony growth, and conidia morphology. Thirteen isolates were identified: Acremonium bacillisporum, A. bactrocephalum, A. strictum, Alternaria alternata, Aureobasidium pullulans, Chaetomium funicola, Cladosporium tenuissimum, Curvularia protuberata, C. tritici, Microsphaeropsis olivacea, Penicillium chrysogenum, P. janczewskii, and Triblidiopycnis pinastri. Malbranchea and Stegonosporium were identified at the genus level. Fourteen isolates, considered to be sterile mycelia, did not fructify in the culture medium. Crude extracts of liquid cultures from endophytes were examined for antibacterial and antifungal activity against bacteria and phytopathogenic fungi using agar diffusion. Antifungal activity against pathogenic fungi was determined by microdilution assays. Extracts of Acremonium bactrocephalum, Microsphaeropsis olivacea, and isolate E-3 inhibited growth of selected pathogenic organisms, indicating they merit further study. This is the first comparative report on the antimicrobial activity of endophytic fungi from Chilean gymnosperms.